How AU Health and AUH plans to elevate health research to new hights

Through a new joint strategy, Health and Aarhus University Hospital aim to provide an optimal framework for clinical health science research, and pave the way for more major breakthroughs for patients all over the world.

The Faculty of Health and Aarhus University Hospital have for many years had a close collaboration on clinical health research. A new joint strategy will help create more breakthroughs for patients around the world. Photo: Tonny Foghmar

Facts about Aarhus University Hospital and Department of Clinical Medicine

  • Aarhus University Hospital has just been named Denmark’s best hospital for the 14th time by Dagens Medicin.
  • AUH is also the best hospital in Denmark and the 10th best in Europe according to the American magazine Newsweek, which has made a list of the world’s best hospitals.
  • The Department of Clinical Medicine at Aarhus University is the largest of Health’s five departments and has a close collaboration with AUH.
  • IKM does not have an official placement on the Shanghai Ranking, which is a global ranking of universities based on research quality and quantity.
  • However, the Shanghai Ranking divides universities into different subject areas, and here you see that Aarhus University ranks 23rd in the world in clinical medicine.

For 90 years, a unique collaboration between Health, the health science faculty at Aarhus University, and Aarhus University Hospital has brought about major breakthroughs in clinical research, to the benefit of patients and public health all over the world.

It is partly thanks to this collaboration that both AUH, AU and the Department of Clinical Medicine can boast their repeated top scores in international rankings.

The two organisations now aim to elevate clinical health research to new heights and achieve new breakthroughs in the prevention, diagnosis and treatments that patients are offered.

Aarhus University Hospital and Health are therefore now launching a new joint strategy which defines common goals and priorities in relation to the collaboration on clinical health science research.

“Our role as a university hospital depends on our deep and close partnership with Aarhus University. We have cultivated this for decades, and the result has been several ground-breaking research results, to the benefit of patients all over the world. With our new joint research strategy, we have laid the foundation for Aarhus to be able to continue to deliver research, education and treatment of top international standard,” says Claus Thomsen, Chief Medical Officer at Aarhus University Hospital.

A clear vision for the future

Ever since the first medical students began their medical education at Aarhus University in 1933, there has been a special spirit of cooperation between the University and the University Hospital.

Today, Health, Aarhus University and the other hospitals of the Region collaborate closely on research, education, talent development and knowledge exchange in the healthcare sector.

The goal of a joint research strategy is to provide the innovative research environment with an optimal framework, and thereby improve the development opportunities for talented researchers.

At the same time, a common direction and clear vision for the future will make it possible to communicate research results and skills more effectively to the outside world.

Four tracks show the direction

Representatives of the departmental management at AUH, professors, associate professors, early career researchers, the department management team at Health, members of the research councils at the Department of Clinical Medicine and AUH and partners from the regional hospitals have all been involved in the development of the strategy.

In order to realise the visions, the strategy sets out four tracks with specific targets, which must be met before the end of 2027.

The tracks focus on skills enhancement for research managers, strengthened collaboration across disciplines, increased involvement of patients in research projects, and diversity, inclusion and transparency in the research environments in order to attract and retain talented researchers.

“Over the past 50 years, we have been accustomed to a close collaboration with the University Hospital in health science, and the strategy will now help to create new synergies and cooperation across disciplines, and achieve even higher quality research. This will ultimately benefit patients when the latest research is integrated into clinical practice,” says Jørgen Frøkiær, Head of the Department of Clinical Medicine at Aarhus University.

Concrete goals

The strategy includes, among other things, the ambition that a minimum of five per cent of AUH’s salary budget should be spent on research, that the number of publications based on interdisciplinary research collaboration should be increased by 10 per cent, and that the scope of external research funding should be increased by 20 per cent by the end of 2027.

For each objective, action plans have been drawn up to produce concrete results – not just for AUH and the Department of Clinical Medicine, but for the entire faculty of health science.

“The strategy focuses on the clinical research that is primarily carried out in close collaboration between the hospitals and the Department of Clinical Medicine, but it is also extremely relevant for researchers in the Faculty’s other departments, who also conduct clinical research or research that is a prerequisite for clinical research. Accordingly, the strategy will help to strengthen the environments around clinical research throughout the Faculty,” says Anne-Mette Hvas, Dean of Health.


Jørgen Frøkiær, Head of the Department of Clinical Medicine, Aarhus University
+45 2023 4527

Anne-Mette Hvas Dean, Health, Aarhus University
+45 8715 2007

Claus Thomsen, Chief Medical Officer, Aarhus University Hospital.
Phone: +45 29 13 58 49